Fair Oaks Orthopedics

Cubital tunnel syndrome treatments fairfax va
Arthritis Of The Wrist Treatments

Do You Have Arthritis In Your Wrist?

The wrist is a complex joint of multiple smaller joints working together to allow movement of your hand, fingers, and thumb. When the joints are healthy, the bones glide easily over each other, protected by smooth cartilage coating the joint surfaces.

Arthritis is a condition or illness that affects the joints of your wrist, wearing them down of this protective cartilage. Without a smooth joint surface, your bones rub against each other, creating joint damage that cannot be repaired.

Several types of arthritis can affect the wrist joint:

Osteoarthritis (degenerative) occurs as people age.

Posttraumatic arthritis (like osteoarthritis) comes from injuries to the joint due to trauma, such as a broken bone or torn ligament.

Inflammatory arthritis occurs with autoimmune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis and is caused by your immune system attacking your own joints.

Pain and stiffness are symptoms of arthritis and occur in your wrist  from simple daily activities.

The severity of symptoms related to arthritis can vary, most arthritis-related diseases are chronic.  They become permanent and eventually cause serious joint damage.

Wrist Ligament Surgery Recovery  

Our Fair Oaks Orthopedic practice offers the best orthopedic care combined with the latest physical and hand therapy services.

Although there is no cure for arthritis, many treatment options are available to help relieve your symptoms.  Please contact us today to make an appointment for more information on how we can help you manage your arthritic condition.

Frequently Asked Questions Arthritis Of The Wrist

Wrist arthritis comes in different forms, each with its characteristics and causes. 

The main types of wrist arthritis are:

Osteoarthritis (OA): Osteoarthritis is the most common type of arthritis and occurs due to the gradual breakdown of the cartilage that cushions the ends of the bones in your joints. This leads to pain, swelling, stiffness, and reduced range of motion or movement in your wrist. OA is often associated with aging, wear and tear, previous wrist injuries, or genetic factors.

Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA): Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease where your body’s immune system mistakenly attacks the synovium (the lining of the joints), leading to inflammation, pain, and joint damage. RA commonly affects the wrist joints, causing swelling, warmth, stiffness, and deformity. It can also involve other joints and organs throughout your body.

Post-Traumatic Arthritis: Post-traumatic arthritis develops following a wrist injury, such as a fracture, dislocation, or ligament tear. Trauma to the wrist can damage the cartilage and joint structures, leading to inflammation and arthritis over time. Post-traumatic arthritis can cause chronic pain, stiffness, and functional limitations in the wrist.

Psoriatic Arthritis: Psoriatic arthritis is a type of inflammatory arthritis that can affect people with psoriasis, a chronic skin condition. Psoriatic arthritis can cause inflammation in the joints of the wrist, leading to pain, swelling, stiffness, and reduced range of motion. It may also involve other joints, tissues, skin, and nails.

Gout Arthritis: This type of arthritis is caused by the buildup of uric acid crystals in the joints. Gout attacks can affect the wrist joint, causing sudden and severe pain, swelling, redness, and warmth. Chronic gout can lead to joint damage and deformity if left untreated.

Ankylosing Spondylitis: Ankylosing spondylitis is a type of inflammatory arthritis that primarily affects the spine, but it can also occur in other joints, including your wrists. Inflammation in the wrist joints can cause pain, stiffness, and limited movement. Ankylosing spondylitis is often associated with inflammation of the sacroiliac joints and spine.

Wrist Symptoms

Not everyone with arthritis will experience symptoms. The severity varies greatly from patient to patient. For some patients, the symptoms are not constant but may come and go depending on their level of activity and other factors.

Symptoms of arthritis may include:

  • Pain
  • Swelling
  • Reduced range of motion or stiffness
  • Weakness in the joint

The causes of carpal tunnel syndrome can be anything that irritates your median nerve, like bone fractures or inflammation. In most of our patient cases, carpal tunnel is generally caused by a combination of overuse, repetitive motions, and keeping your hands and wrists in certain positions for prolonged periods of time.


Before recommending treatment, Dr. Pournaras will  conduct an in-depth examination to accurately diagnose your symptoms. He will perform a physical exam and review your medical history. In many cases, he may use additional testing like an X-ray or nerve conduction study.

Once it has been determined that you have carpal tunnel syndrome, 

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Treatments 
Most treatments depend on the severity of your symptoms.
Mild symptoms usually respond to the resting the afflicted area, icing several times a day, taking anti-inflammatory medication, and wearing a wrist splint to ease compression of the nerve in the carpal tunnel.
  • Rest. Stopping any activity that causing pain and irritation.
  • Ice Packs
  • Splint/Brace
  • Anti-Inflammatory Medication
  • Modification Of Activities Contributing To Condition
  • Steroid Injections

The goal of these treatments is to relieve any pressure or inflammation that’s irritating the median nerve.

The goal of Carpal tunnel release surgery is to decompress the median nerve by dividing the transverse carpal ligament. There are two main surgical procedures to accomplish this. They are called open carpal tunnel release (OCTR) and endoscopic carpal tunnel release (ECTR).

Open Carpal Tunnel Release (OCTR)

 This is the traditional method – open release, in which Dr. Pournaras will open your wrist directly to do the surgery.

Endoscopic Carpal Tunnel Release (ECTR)

The other method  Endoscopic Carpal Tunnel Release, is where a thin, flexible tube that has a camera is put into your wrist through a tiny incision. The camera guides Dr. Pournaras to complete the surgery with thin tools put into the wrist through another small cut.

Surgery is recommended to our patients with severe symptoms such as pain, significant sleep interference, muscle weakness, and if you have not had any relief of your symptoms with at least 6-8 weeks of the non-surgical treatment options.

Carpal Tunnel Surgery has been proven very effective in the treatment of carpal tunnel syndrome. It involves an incision in the palm of your hand and increasing the space for the nerve.This will release the pressure around the nerve, leading to improvement of your symptoms.




3998 Fair Ridge Dr., Suite 100 Fairfax, Va 22033

Get Directions

Mon 8:00 am – 4:30 pm
Tue 8:00 am – 4:30 pm
Wed 8:00 am – 4:30 pm
Thu 8:00 am – 4:30 pm
Fri 8:00 am – 4:30 pm
Sat Closed
Sun Closed

Fair Oaks Orthopedics

For over 30 years, Virginia Board Certified Physician, Dr. Stephen W. Pournaras, Jr. has provided excellent healthcare and treatment for his patients. As a multi-specialty orthopedic practice, offering the best for you medically to treat, heal and lead you to optimum recovery. We are dedicated to using state-of-the-art technology while building nurturing relationships with each of our patients.

Contact Us Today.

    Skip to content